John Newling – The Clearing Part I
I went to see this exhibition last week in my lunch break. It was really good to get out of the office and experience something different. I went with Katie to find Bio City, the location of the first stage of John Newling’s work, The Clearing Part I. It was such an interesting space to have a nosey round, the exhibition itself being in a science lab. You see these huge buildings everywhere and you don’t often have the opportunity to have a good look inside.
I really enjoyed the work. The contrast of the view through the window of a wasteland highlighted the more unnatural hydroponic growing system inside the lab. In the middle of the room there were fans regulating the temperature of the beech trees. On the edge of the lab there were series of experiments in progress. John Newling has shredded historical documents about the space on the river Trent to make soil. He is using a compost barrel outside and turning it throughout the day, which produces balls of soil which he is then growing seeds in. I think this is my favourite element of the work. Aesthetically the balls of soil with the paper intertwined and the signs of early growth make me smile.